Crowning the Nice Girl: Gender, Ethnicity, and Culture in by Christine Reiko Yano

By Christine Reiko Yano

After global conflict II, eastern americans in Hawai‘i sought to carve a favorable area of interest of public citizenship in the neighborhood. In 1953 participants of the Honolulu jap Junior Chamber of trade and their better halves created a attractiveness contest, the Cherry Blossom pageant (CBF) Queen festival, which fast grew to become an annual spectacle for the turning out to be city inhabitants of Honolulu. Crowning the good Girl analyzes the competition via its many years of improvement to the current inside a number of frameworks of gender, type, and race/ethnicity. Drawing on vast archival examine; interviews with CBF queens, contestants, and organizers; and player remark within the 50th Annual competition as a volunteer, Christine Yano paints a fancy portrait of not just a attractiveness festival, but in addition a community.
The learn starts with the topic of good looks pageants ordinarily and Asian American attractiveness pageants specifically, interrogating the problems they elevate, embedding them inside their histories, and studying them as a part of an international tradition that has taken its version from the leave out the United States contest. bankruptcy weaves a posh photograph of the explicit old and modern contexts of the CBF Queen festival in its infancy by way of forthcoming the competition from various views, together with that of its organizer, the Honolulu jap Junior Chamber of trade. bankruptcy 3 examines the early improvement of the CBF within the Fifties and Sixties, its glory years. Yano will pay shut realization to where of the CBF in gentle of inner divisions in the jap American neighborhood, interethnic family members in Hawai‘i, tourism, Nikkei groups within the continental usa, and family with Japan. She follows the festival through the a long time into the Nineteen Nineties, including corresponding "herstories"—extensive narratives drawn from interviews with CBF queens. each one narrative is preceded through a statement that issues up the subjects of the interview and the altering position of eastern American girls and the CBF by way of race/ethnicity, gender, and identification. The paintings concludes by way of framing problems with race, ethnicity, spectacle, and group in the intertwined issues of niceness and banality.
In tying the Cherry Blossom pageant Queen competition to photographs of group, <i>Crowning the good woman demonstrates the ways that public occasions akin to gala's and wonder contests are crucial to performances of id, tradition, social type, and politics. it is going to be of exact curiosity to scholars and students operating in anthropology, sociology, historical past, ethnic reviews, and women’s experiences.

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Additional info for Crowning the Nice Girl: Gender, Ethnicity, and Culture in Hawai'i's Cherry Blossom Festical

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As Dawn Mabalon explains: Several years ago, a Philippine tourism secretary told a reporter that “beauty contests are a part of Philippine culture. ” In the early 34 chapter one decades of Filipina/o American settlement in Stockton [California], these two events — beauty contests and cockfights — remained the most popular events. (2003:3) The centrality of beauty contests in Philippine culture spills over into Filipino American culture, tying the two in highly diasporic ways. In Hawai‘i, for example, besides the statewide Miss Hawaii Filipina pageant, there are smaller “hometown” contests organized by local communities tied together by their origins in towns in the Philippines.

In Asian American beauty pageants, this decision is enmeshed within issues of culture and identity. Judges’ evaluation of the talent portion defines what best represents that Asian American identity. 28 chapter one Dress and the Body: Asianizing versus Americanizing The active performance of Asian culture in Asian American beauty pageants can be seen on stage most clearly in terms of dress. 11 These ethnicized displays are separated from the global beauty pageant displays of women in evening gowns and, in some cases, swimsuits.

Lim challenges the notion that Asian American beauty pageants only affirm white standards of beauty, arguing that these pageants actually reward “counterhegemonic beauty” (2003:193). King argues, “Japanese American women have either tried to assimilate and fit in with hegemonic models of beauty in the United States or to create a [counterhegemonic] beauty ‘difference’ that itself has been co-opted by the mainstream as ‘exotic’ ” (2001:163). The resultant competing models of beauty are made all the more complex with the inclusion of mixed-race contestants.

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